Weeping for Youth

Anacreon, fr. 365

“My hair is gray already–
And at my temples it is white.
That charm of youth is no longer present
And my teeth are just old.

The great span of sweet life
isn’t left for me any more.

Now I often weep aloud,
Because I am afraid of Tartaros.
The inner hall of Hades is terrible
And the path to get there is hard.
One thing is certain:
The one who goes down, may not return.”

πολιοὶ μὲν ἡμὶν ἤδη
κρόταφοι κάρη τε λευκόν,
χαρίεσσα δ᾿ οὐκέτ᾿ ἥβη
πάρα, γηραλέοι δ᾿ ὀδόντες,
γλυκεροῦ δ᾿ οὐκέτι πολλὸς
βιότου χρόνος λέλειπται·

διὰ ταῦτ᾿ ἀνασταλύζω
θαμὰ Τάρταρον δεδοικώς·
Ἀίδεω γάρ ἐστι δεινὸς
μυχός, ἀργαλῆ δ᾿ ἐς αὐτὸν
κάτοδος· καὶ γὰρ ἑτοῖμον
καταβάντι μὴ ἀναβῆναι.

An oil painting: Orpheus is at the center next to an outline of eurydice, performing in front of Hades and Persephone in a cavern of sorts. There are other people listening on the margins.
Henryk Siemiradzki, “Orpheus in the underworld”

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